Pakistan plans to cultivate tea on an area of 25,000 acres over next 5 years

The tea farms would be cultivated on a commercial scale.

A view of an NTHRI tea garden in Shinkiari, Mansehra, Khyber Pakhunkhwa (KPK).

The Government of Pakistan aims to implement tea plantations on a commercial scale by deciding to cultivate tea on an area of over 25,000 acres over the next five years.

This was revealed by the Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Food Security, Jamshed Iqbal Cheema, during his visit to the National Tea & High-Value Crops Research Institute (NTHRI) at Shinkiari, Mansehra, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK).

A tea garden in Shinkiari Valley, Mansehra, KPK.

According to Cheema, the incumbent government is going to ‘create history’ by pursuing this initiative.

The National Tea Research Institute (NTRI), later renamed as NTHRI, was established in 1986 in Shinkirari, KPK, on the recommendation of Chinese experts.

The organization is performing an essential role in promoting tea plantations in the South Asian country.

Cheema remarked that out of the 25,000 acres of land reserved for tea plantation, 10,000 are government-owned forests, while 12,000 acres are owned by private enterprises.

Moreover, around 3,000 acres of land have already been identified in Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK) for the purpose of tea plantations.

Workers separate tea leaves in the Shinkiari tea plantation valley. (Pakistan Tea Garden / Facebook)

The government also aims to expand tea plantations in every tea-cultivable area of the South Asian country in the next phase.

The SAPM remarked that around 178,000 acres of land having the potential for tea plantation has already been identified.

He added that Pakistan could produce its own tea instead of importing tonnes of tea annually from several countries.

Cheema lamented that the South Asian country spends around ₨. 90 billion annually on tea imports.

Out of this, around ₨. 89 billion is spent on importing black tea alone, while only a billion rupees are spent importing green tea.

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